The proliferation of web-based productivity applications – with a GTD twist, of course – seems to be the buzzword for these days. It’s less than one month since I wrote a review about 43actions.com, and today I will do the same for another application, called Gtdagenda. You can find it at gtdagenda.com, and if you want to access your (previously created) account from a wireless device, there is also a mobile-enabled version at gtdagenda.mobi.
The first thing to write about Gtdagenda is the fact that this is a paid service. There are subscription plans starting from $4.45 / month (or $39.45 / year), up to $7.95 / month (or $69,95 / year). I will detail the differences between the free plans, the $4.45 plan and the $7.95 plan later on this post.
The whole application is structured in 7 sections, namely Goals, Projects, Tasks, Contexts, Next Actions, Checklists and Schedules. Those sections are pretty much self-explanatory, and the GTD-savvy won’t have any difficulty to perform on this set up. Projects, Contexts, Tasks and Next Actions are easy to remember concepts from the David Allen’s book that we’ve all read. Or at least some of us have read :-).
There are, however, several approaches that need some attention, and these are: Goals, Checklists and Schedules.
Gtdagenda let you establish goals, which are in fact situations you want to overcome, or levels where you want to upgrade your life. These goals are split into Career and Personal goals. There is some resemblance to David Allen’s vertical approach (the 15.000 feet perspective, if you remember…), but in a very simple and easy to grasp manner. I found this addition an interesting and valuable addition of this application. Also, I think this is quite unique, at least among the web-based GTD implementations that I used recent.
Another interesting section is Checklists. This section let you add lists of items you spread over a specific timeframe. There are three defaults: weekly time frame, monthly time frame and yearly time frame. On a weekly checklist you can have, for instance, your daily exercising routine, and in addition of this, on every Thursday and Monday, your blog updating sessions. It’s a fresh approach to the checklists concept, and I have to admit, that is also a unique feature among the web-based GTD implementation I used so far.
Schedules are a way of timing your activities. You can link a schedule to one of your task or projects, and have it in the system on a visual level. Schedules are especially useful for students or people engaged in formalized and repetitive activities. But the fact that schedules can be linked to your current projects and tasks is a big plus. And, even if I’m repeating myself, a fresh perspective on the GTD productivity process.
Having the specifics of Gtdagenda highlighted, we must say that the implementation of the contexts, projects, actions and next actions is not better or worse than your average web-based GTD system. Which is, in general, very good, if we have to qualify it.
The mobile interface is better than the web, I dare say. Here’s a screen shot of the home page on my iPhone:
And here’s another screen shot with the same application, on the same iPhone, this time with the Next Actions section at work:
Now about the pricing plans. As I told you already there are three levels: free, Basic and Premium. There aren’t any functionality limitations, the only draw-back – and advantages for the paying customer – are related to the number of goals, projects and tasks that one can have at once. Using a free account you can have a maximum of 3 goals, 5 projects, 5 contexts and 5 checklists. The Basic plan, which starts at $4.45 / month (or $39.45 / year) gives you 10 goals, 30 projects, 30 contexts and 30 checklists. You also get the Schedules and Calendar sections, and the promise that your tasks won’t interfere with any third-party ads. The free version is supported through advertising, so by paying you are also cleaning up your interface. And, finally, the Premium plan, which starts at $7.95 / monthly (or $69,95 / year) gives you unlimited goals, projects and checklists. And of course, Schedules and Calendar.
I’ve not used Gtdagenda so far in an extensive way, but it looks pretty impressive to me.
The pluses I could give:
- good GTD implementation
- Goals, Checklists and Schedules
- mobile version (iPhone ready)
- the interface could use some usability touches
- the paying model is not so attractive since there are a plethora of free online GTD-ready application